Turkey is a mecca for shopaholics with its rich avenues filled with historical bazaars and souks interspersed with new-age markets. Turkey is one of the best places for shopping, as it boasts of open-air markets, chic boutiques and covered Turkish bazaars. Discover the stunning maze of stalls that cover Istanbul’s Spice Bazaar; spend some free time browsing and exploring the stalls selling exotic spices, fresh foods and vegetables - shopping in Istanbul is an absolute delight. If you are a shopaholic, and are looking for national and international brands; then clothes shopping in Turkey is one thing you should not miss out on. Whether your passion is fashion, shoes, accessories, home-ware or local items, Turkey boasts of a huge collection of shops selling these. Stroll along the streets to discover antiques, designer boutiques and local crafts or come across street sellers that wander from corner to corner. Here are the best places to shop in Turkey.
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1. Grand Bazaar, IstanbulGet ready to get lost in one of the oldest and largest covered markets in the world situated in the heart of the old city of Istanbul - the Grand Bazaar. When it comes to shopping in Istanbul, this one cannot be missed! This sprawling, colourful and chaotic bazaar includes 60 streets covered by 5,000 shops, that attract 200,000 to 400,000 tourists’ every day. A heaven for shoppers interested in traditional shops and goods, these open streets also have several cafes and restaurants to try out the local Turkish cuisine. If you're looking for bargains, this is also where you can do some cheap shopping in Istanbul. Turkey shopping can't get better than this! A flea market is held on every Sunday in Istanbul near the Grand Bazaar, and Horhor Market in Aksaray on weekends. What to buy in Grand Bazaar: Carpets, jewellery, embroideries, hand-painted ceramics, spices and antiques - most of them are treasured souvenirs. Getting there: You can take a tram to Sirkeci, Universite or Beyazit. The Grand Bazaar is at a walking distance from the Aya Sofya/Blue Mosque area. Opening hours: 8:30am to 7:00pm (Mon-Sat), Sunday closed
2. Egyptian Spice Bazaar, IstanbulThe Egyptian Spice Bazaar in Istanbul is one of the best places for shopping in Turkey. It offers an enticing array of jams, dry fruits, exotic spices, coffee, tea, nuts, and of course multitude of flavours. Name just about any exotic spice, are chances are you will get it here! Don't forget to take some spices back home!
3. Istanbul Handicrafts CentreThe Istanbul Handicrafts Centre is another great place to buy souvenirs in Turkey. From famous ceramics to designer handicrafts, calligraphy and miniatures, you will get everything here. Turkey also offers many vibrant outdoor markets, selling variety of fresh food and produce, antiques and clothes.
4. Kemeraltı, IzmirA historical market of Izmir, Kemeraltı, has been there since the 17th century. It’s the most lively shopping centre of Izmir. You'll get some of the best Turkish handicrafts here. Carpets and rugs, plain-woven mats; wood, metal and ceramics, the best Turkish handicrafts are available here. Post shopping, sit in one of the coffee and tea cafes and enjoy some Turkish refreshments.
5. Serdar-ı Ekrem, IstanbulOne of the coolest streets for shopping in Istanbul. Located near the iconic Galata Tower, this cobbled-stoned street is famous for its funky, quirky boutiques. You can spend hours and hours shopping at the plethora of jewellery stores, designer boutiques, and vintage shops here. Opening hours: 11am-8pm (Mon-Sat) and 11am-6pm (Sun)
6. Ulus, AnkaraWhen in Turkey, make sure to visit the beautifully adorned bazaars of Ankara. Most of the markets are located in Ulus selling handicrafts, traditional linen window dressings, and wicker baskets. The long cobbled-streets are a delight to stroll down, picking up handmade soaps and olive oils on your way; they make good souvenirs as well.
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